Gift cards are the perfect way to grow a retail or visitor attraction business, build customer relationships and increase your revenue. The gift card market is also expected to grow to over €2,000 billion globally by 2027.
How gift cards can grow your business
Gift cards are cost-effective to implement and while they are not a new concept, they sit at the heart of a modern omnichannel retail ecosystem, as they can be both sold and redeemed instore or online.
Build brand awareness and bring in new customers
On average, over half of people buy gift cards to give to someone else. Word-of-mouth is one of the strongest advertisements for a business, and being given a gift card is a firm endorsement. For customers who love your shop or attraction, they can share their experience with friends and family through gift cards, helping to grow your customer base.
Gift cards can also be an integral part of your customer loyalty programs, being offered for repeat visits, multiple purchases or as part of larger marketing campaigns.
Gift cards provide additional revenue when they are purchased, but they can also generate above average order values when they are redeemed. As many customers view gift cards as “free money”, it’s been found that 42% of shoppers often spend more than the amount of the gift card.
They are also a great gift idea for last minute shoppers, as they are an easy purchase if clearly advertised by the till or on a website checkout. Also, if stocks are running low or on time delivery can’t be guaranteed in the run up to Christmas, they ensure you have something in stock for last minute shoppers.
Driving your omnichannel strategy
When integrated with your EPOS system, gift cards can be sold online or instore and redeemed across any of your branches. Gift cards are a great incentive for customers to join your CRM, as both customers and retailers can track purchases and the amount remaining on the gift card.
They are also a great way to manage returns. If a customer needs to return items that have passed their return date, offering a gift card is a way to maintain that customer relationship and also keep their money in your business. Paperless gift cards can also be a part of your offering. By issuing these to a customer’s email address, they can be added to your CRM and provide additional marketing opportunities.
Drive sales post-holiday
2021 was the strongest year on record for gift card sales, with a 114% increase on sales for November to December compared to the previous year. With such strong gift card sales in the latter part of the year, many retailers enjoy increased traffic early Q1, which can help offset that typically slower sales season; and as those customers redeeming typically spend more, it is a welcome bonus in the post-Christmas period.
Get an EPOS system that accepts gift cards
With the clear benefits of gift cards for retailers and visitor attractions, it’s important to integrate these with your EPOS system. At Retail Integration, our Meridian system includes gift cards as part of its core EPOS and ticketing software.
With Meridian Retail and Meridian Experience, retailers and attractions can offer gift cards online and instore. With their advanced suite of features, gift cards can be offered physically or paperless and can be integrated with your customer profiles and eCommerce store.
Retail Integration is the partner of choice for many of Ireland’s leading specialty retailers and visitor attractions. We have helped many clients implement gift cards to reach their goals, whether it is building customer relationships, generating more revenue, or increasing traffic to your business.